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Speleology in Kazakhstan

Shakalov on 04 Jul, 2018
Hello everyone!   I pleased to invite you to the official site of Central Asian Karstic-Speleological commission ("Kaspeko")   There, we regularly publish reports about our expeditions, articles and reports on speleotopics, lecture course for instructors, photos etc. ...

New publications on hypogene speleogenesis

Klimchouk on 26 Mar, 2012
Dear Colleagues, This is to draw your attention to several recent publications added to KarstBase, relevant to hypogenic karst/speleogenesis: Corrosion of limestone tablets in sulfidic ground-water: measurements and speleogenetic implications Galdenzi,

The deepest terrestrial animal

Klimchouk on 23 Feb, 2012
A recent publication of Spanish researchers describes the biology of Krubera Cave, including the deepest terrestrial animal ever found: Jordana, Rafael; Baquero, Enrique; Reboleira, Sofía and Sendra, Alberto. ...

Caves - landscapes without light

akop on 05 Feb, 2012
Exhibition dedicated to caves is taking place in the Vienna Natural History Museum   The exhibition at the Natural History Museum presents the surprising variety of caves and cave formations such as stalactites and various crystals. ...

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That Nacktkarst is (german.) see exposed karst.?

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Featured articles from Cave & Karst Science Journals
Chemistry and Karst, White, William B.
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Featured articles from other Geoscience Journals
Karst environment, Culver D.C.
Mushroom Speleothems: Stromatolites That Formed in the Absence of Phototrophs, Bontognali, Tomaso R.R.; D’Angeli Ilenia M.; Tisato, Nicola; Vasconcelos, Crisogono; Bernasconi, Stefano M.; Gonzales, Esteban R. G.; De Waele, Jo
Calculating flux to predict future cave radon concentrations, Rowberry, Matt; Marti, Xavi; Frontera, Carlos; Van De Wiel, Marco; Briestensky, Milos
Microbial mediation of complex subterranean mineral structures, Tirato, Nicola; Torriano, Stefano F.F;, Monteux, Sylvain; Sauro, Francesco; De Waele, Jo; Lavagna, Maria Luisa; D’Angeli, Ilenia Maria; Chailloux, Daniel; Renda, Michel; Eglinton, Timothy I.; Bontognali, Tomaso Renzo Rezio
Evidence of a plate-wide tectonic pressure pulse provided by extensometric monitoring in the Balkan Mountains (Bulgaria), Briestensky, Milos; Rowberry, Matt; Stemberk, Josef; Stefanov, Petar; Vozar, Jozef; Sebela, Stanka; Petro, Lubomir; Bella, Pavel; Gaal, Ludovit; Ormukov, Cholponbek;
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Your search for collapse features (Keyword) returned 21 results for the whole karstbase:
Showing 1 to 15 of 21
Karst development in Ordovician carbonates: Western Platform of Newfoundland, Master of Science (MS) Thesis, 1978, Karolyi, Marika Sarolta

The Appalachian fold belt system in Newfoundland is divided into three tectonic divisions: Western Platform; Central Mobile Belt; Avalon Platform Rocks of the Western Platform range in age from Precambrian to Carboniferous. Major karst areas are found there is Ordovician and Carboniferous rocks. Karst features of the study area (Goose Arm to Bonne Bay Big Pond) are in the Ordovician carbonates of the undivided St. George and Table Head Formations, covering a few hundred square kilometers. Features include karren, sinkholes, sinking streams, and karst springs, caves and other solutional and collapse features.
In the study area multiple fold and faulting episodes complicate the geology. Extensive and probably repeated glaciations have produced rugged terrane with U-shaped valleys and as much as 300m relief on the carbonates. There is variable but thick till cover. A class or classes of ice-scoured closed depressions with internal drainage are recognized. Postglacial karst forms are limited to varieties of karren (mainly littoral), small sinkholes, and cave systems that are inaccessively small in most instances. Distribution of all karst features is highly irregular.
Hydrologic patterns follow fluvial, fluviokarstic and holokarstic drainage. Large number of sinking ponds have seasonal overflow channels. The ground water drainage routes are generally short and shallow, with varied hydraulic gradients. Few instances of ground water route integration to regional springs is found.
The water chemistry of the area displays a tight normal distribution of hardness. This is attributed to the ponding effect. Seasonal trends show an overall increase in total hardness and other parameters, with some ponds showing linear increases and others cyclic variations.
Karst type and distribution is complex and irregular, but both glaciokarstic and karstiglacial development is present. The majority of karst forms point to karstiglacial development where previous karst forms have been modified by ice. Karstification is controlled by geology, rock lithology, hydraulic gradients and glacial scour and infill. Karstic processes continue to operate today, modifying the scoured basins and creating new karst forms.


Formes de relief pseudokarstiques sur Mars, 1985, Battistini, R.
PSEUDOKARST LANDFORMS ON MARS - There are many morphologic features on Mars looking like karstic features, principally in aeolian, glacio-eolian and volcanic formations: etch-pitted terrain, sinkholes aligned along fractures, sinuous alignments of large cavities similar to megadolines, etc. Some of these features are probably collapse features, and some others probably thermokarstic features but it is difficult to understand exactly the process of their genesis, in some cases very different from the process of terrestrial morphologic features. We may evoke the possibility of an underground karst on Mars.

Mesozoic dissolution tectonics on the West Central Shelf, UK Central North Sea, 1999, Clark Ja, Cartwright Ja, Stewart Sa,
3-D seismic mapping of the Upper Jurassic Kimmeridge Clay Formation on the West Central Shelf in the Central North Sea reveals a complex fault array which is constrained by seismic interpretation and well control to be of late Jurassic/early Cretaceous age. Fault shapes in plan-view range from linear to circular. Linear fault lengths are 200-300 m to 5 km, the strongly curved and circular faults range in diameter from 100-1000 m. Fault trends are apparently random and display no correlation in location or trend with basement (sub-Zechstein) structures. There is, however, a strong link between this fault pattern and the structure of the top Zechstein (top salt) surface. Linear faults occur at the edges of elongate salt walls and the circular faults lie directly above structures which have been interpreted here as tall, steep-sided salt chimneys. The salt chimneys are present only in the thick, elongate minibasins of Triassic sediment which lie between the salt walls. It is argued that salt dissolution controls the timing, location, orientation and shape of the late Jurassic/early Cretaceous faults. A model is provided to account for the development of both salt walls and chimneys. We suggest that early Triassic karstification of the Zechstein evaporites led to development of an array of circular collapse features. During the ensuing episode of Triassic halokinesis which led to minibasin subsidence and salt wall growth, salt passively 'intruded' the circular collapse features within the subsiding minibasins to form narrow salt chimneys. The resulting array of salt walls and chimneys was subject to dissolution during subsequent subaerial exposure and the late Jurassic marine transgression of the basin (creating the observed fault array), prior to sealing of the salt from circulating groundwater by compaction of the Upper Jurassic and Lower Cretaceous shales which blanket the area. (C) 1999 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved

Gypsum-karst collapse in the Black Hills, South Dakota-Wyoming, USA, 2000, Epstein, Jack B.

Intrastratal dissolution of gypsum and anhydrite in four stratigraphic units of Pennsylvanian to Jurassic age in the Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming has resulted in many collapse features that have developed primarily in the non-soluble overlying rocks. Subsidence has affected several areas that are undergoing urban development. Subsurface intrastratal dissolution of anhydrite in the Minnelusa Formation has produced a regional collapse breccia, extensive disruption of bedding, many dolines, and breccia pipes and pinnacles, some of which extend upwards more than 300 m into overlying strata. Recent collapse is evidenced by steep-walled dolines more than 20 m deep, collapse in water wells and natural springs resulting in sediment disruption and contamination, and fresh circular scarps surrounding shallow depressions. Many beds of gypsum are contorted because of expansion due to its hydration from anhydrite, and many gypsum veinlets extend downward along random fractures from parent gypsum beds. Several dolines are sites of resurgent springs. As the anhydrite dissolution front in the subsurface Minnelusa moves downdip and radially away from the center of the Black Hills uplift, these resurgent springs will dry up and new ones will form as the geomorphology of the Black Hills evolves. Old dolines and breccia pipes, preserved in cross section on canyon walls, attest to the former position of the dissolution front. Mirror Lake, which is expanding northwestward in a downdip direction, is a local analog of a migrating dissolution front.


Patterns of collapse chambers in the endokarsts of Mallorca (Balearic Islands, Spain), 2000, Giné, S À, Ngel

A general overview on the patterns of collapse chambers in the karsts of Mallorca is presented. The great significance of single breakdown chambers and strings of large rooms as one of the major constituents of cave patterns is easy to recognize in the cave surveys of many Majorcan caves. Detailed mapping of several collapse features such as breakdown piles, sloped boulder floors, vault profiles, coalescence areas, boulder chokes and dome structures can yield useful information regarding description and better understanding of cave collapse patterns.


Karst in evaporite rocks of the United States., 2001, Johnson K. S.
Evaporites are the most soluble of common rocks; they are dissolved readily to form the same range of karst features that typically are found in limestones and dolomites. Evaporites, including gypsum (or anhydrite) and salt, are present in 32 of the 48 contiguous United States, and they underlie about 35-40% of the land area. Evaporite outcrops typically contain sinkholes, caves, disappearing streams, and springs. Other evidence of active karst in evaporites includes surface-collapse features and saline springs or saline plumes that result from dissolution of salt. Many evaporites, including some in the deeper subsurface, also contain evidence of paleokarst that is no longer active; this evidence includes dissolution breccias, breccia pipes, slumped beds, and collapse structures. Evaporites occur in 24 separate structural basins or geographic districts in the United States, and either local or extensive evaporite karst is known in almost all of these basins or districts. Human activities also have caused development of evaporite karst, primarily in salt deposits. Boreholes or underground mines may enable (either intentionally or inadvertently) unsaturated water to flow through or against salt deposits, thus allowing development of small to large dissolution cavities. If the dissolution cavity is large enough and shallow enough, successive roof failures can cause land subsidence or catastrophic, collapse. Evaporite karst, both natural and human-induced, is far more prevalent than commonly believed.

The Relation Between Structure and Saltwater Intrusion in the Floridan Aquifer System, Northeastern Florida, 2001, Spechler, R. M.

Saltwater intrusion is a potential threat to the quality of ground water in northeastern Florida. Elevated chloride concentrations have been observed in more than 70 wells tapping the Upper Floridan and the upper zone of the Lower Floridan aquifers. In Duval and northern St. Johns County, increased chloride concentrations in water from some wells along the coast and up to 14 miles inland indicate that saline water is gradually intruding into the freshwater zones of the Floridan aquifer system. Several mechanisms may explain this intrusion of saline water and the consequent increase in concentrations of chloride in northeastern Florida. The most plausible explanation is the upward movement of saline water along joints, fractures, collapse features, faults, or other structural anomalies. Land-based seismic reflection and marine seismic reflection profiles along the St. Johns River and off the coast of northeastern Florida show the presence of widely scattered solution collapse features in the Floridan aquifer system and overlying sediments. These features can create conduits of relatively high vertical conductivity, providing a hydraulic connection between freshwater zones and deeper, more saline zones. Lower heads caused by pumping from the shallower freshwater zones of the aquifer can result in an increased potential for upward movement of saline water through nearly vertical zones of preferential permeability. Saline water then can move laterally through the porous aquifer matrix or along horizontal fractures or solution zones within the aquifer toward well fields or other areas of lower hydraulic head


Karst in evaporite rocks of the United States, 2002, Johnson K. S. ,
Evaporites are the most soluble of common rocks; they are dissolved readily to form the same range of karst features that typically are found in limestones and dolomites. Evaporites, including gypsum (or anhydrite) and salt, are present in 32 of the 48 contiguous United States, and they underlie about 35-40% of the land area. Evaporite outcrops typically contain sinkholes, caves, disappearing streams, and springs. Other evidence of active karst in evaporites includes surface-collapse features and saline springs or saline plumes that result from dissolution of salt. Many evaporites, including some in the deeper subsurface, also contain evidence of paleokarst that is no longer active; this evidence includes dissolution breccias, breccia pipes, slumped beds, and collapse structures. Evaporites occur in 24 separate structural basins or geographic districts in the United States, and either local or extensive evaporite karst is known in almost all of these basins or districts. Human activities also have caused development of evaporite karst, primarily in salt deposits. Boreholes or underground mines may enable (either intentionally or inadvertently) unsaturated water to flow through or against salt deposits, thus allowing development of small to large dissolution cavities. If the dissolution cavity is large enough and shallow enough, successive roof failures can cause land subsidence or catastrophic collapse. Evaporite karst, both natural and human-induced, is far more prevalent than commonly believed

Geological and geotechnical context of cover collapse and subsidence in mid-continent US clay-mantled karst, 2002, Cooley T,
This paper presents a synthesis of geologic and geotechnical concepts to present a unified model of conditions controlling The development of cover-collapse sinkholes and associated ground subsidence. Appropriate engineering response to the hazards associated with collapse and subsidence requires a full understanding of the underlying mechanisms that produce such effects. The geotechnical characteristics of the overlying clay mantle and occurrence of the associated cover-collapse features are not random, but rather are directly tied to the underlying water flow routes and their development through time. The clay mantle and underlying epikarst are two components of a single system, each of the components influencing the other. This paper brings together these two aspects in terms of the author's personal experience and observations as a geologist, geotechnical engineer, hydrogeologist, and caver. A summary of the basic model follows. Much of the clay mantle and pinnacled upper surface of the epikarst form while surface drainage still prevails. At this stage, the karst underdrains are insufficiently developed to transport soils, although some subsidence into cutters occurs because of dissolutional rock removal. Soil arches and macropore flow routes associated with cutters have developed by this stage. As competent deep conduits extend into the area by headward linking, the cutters with the most favorable drains are linked to the conduits first and act as attractors for the development of a tributary, laterally integrated drainage system in the epikarst. Once the most efficient cutter drains become competent to transport soils, the depressed top-of-rock and ground surfaces characteristic of dolines develop. A given doline underdrain is likely to have multiple tributary drains from adjacent cutters, which vary in soil transport competence. Soil stiffness in the clay mantle over the limestone varies as a result of the pattern of stresses imposed as the underlying rock surface is lowered by dissolution and later as soil piping locally removes soils. In the absence of karst, these soils would have developed a laterally uniform, stiff to very stiff consistency. Where soil near the soil-bedrock interface is locally removed, however, the weight of the materials overlying this void is transferred to abutment zones on the pinnacles by soil arches. Local soil loading in the abutment areas of these arches would increase at least on the-order of 50% in the case of an isolated cavity. In some cases, multiple closely spaced cutters whose soil arches have narrow, laterally constrained abutment zones bearing on the intervening pinnacles may produce substantially higher soil abutment stresses. If the clays in the abutment zones do not fail, they would respond to this increase in stress by consolidating: stiffening and decreasing in volume. The cutters spanned by the soil arches accumulate raveled soils that are 'under-consolidated', the soft zones noted between pinnacles by Sowers. A simple integral of stresses analysis makes it obvious, however that no continuous soft zone exists. It is the transfer of load to the pinnacles through the stiffened abutment soils that allows these locally soft areas to exist. Soil stiffness profiles from borings substantiate this pattern. Cover-collapse features develop where soil transport through cutter drains is sufficient to remove the soils from beneath these arched areas. Two types of collapse have been observed: type I collapses have an upward-stoping open void whose rubble pile is removed by transport as fast as it is generated, producing a deep, steep-sided final collapses. In some cases, multiple voids in clusters can form with narrow abutments separating them. Large collapses may involve a progressive failure of several members of a cluster, including intervening pillars. Type 2 features are soil-filled voids limited in their rate of upward growth by the rate of soil removal, have little open void space, and migrate to the ground surface as a column of soft soils, finally producing a shallow depression. The type 2 features have geotechnical significance because of their effect on settlement under imposed loads. A single underdrain system may service both types of features, the behavior of particular voids being dependent on the relative efficiencies of their drains. This behavior can also change with time because backfilling of the underdrains with soil or flushing out of the soil filling can occur with changes in hydrologic or erosional regimes

Vulcanospeleology in Saudi Arabia., 2006, Pint, J. J.
Saudi Arabia has over 80,000 km2 of lava fields, locally known as harrats. However, only a few studies of lava caves in Saudi Arabia have been published internationally. This article summarizes the published and unpublished findings of all known expeditions to lava caves in the kingdom. Prior to 2001, reports of such caves were mostly limited to sightings of collapse holes by vulcanologists surveying the lava fields. Few caves were entered and no cave maps were produced. In 2001 and 2002, expeditions were organized to Harrat Kishb, located northeast of Makkah (Mecca). Three lava caves measuring 22 m, 150 m and 320 m in length were surveyed and the collapse features of a fourth cavepossibly over 3 km longwere studied. Two throwing sticks, a plant-fiber rope and the remains of stone walls were found in some of these caves. In 2003, lava tubes measuring 530 m and 208 m were surveyed in Harrat Ithnayn and Harrat Khaybar, respectively. Animal bones and coprolites were found in both caves. In 2003 and 2004, studies were carried out in Hibashi Cave, located in Harrat Nawasif/Al Buqum, 245 km southeast of Makkah. The cave was surveyed (length: 689.5 m) and found to contain two layers of burnt bat guano overlying a bed of redeposited loess up to 1.5 meters deep and up to 5800 years old. At least 19 different minerals were found, three being extremely rare organic compounds related to the guano combustion. Bones, horns, coprolites, ruins of a wall and a human skull ca. 425 years old were also found. There is evidence of many more lava caves in Saudi Arabia, particularly in Harrat Khaybar. Formal archeological and biological studies have not yet been carried out in Saudi lava caves but may produce interesting results.

Cave un-roofing as a large-scale geomorphic process, 2006, Klimchouk Alexander
A morphogenetic approach appears to be the most sensible in defining the tiankeng as a typological category. Tiankengs are giant collapse dolines formed over large river caves, with continuous precipitous perimeter and a diameter-to-depth ratio between 0.5 and 2. The term bears an evolutionary meaning, referring to the youthful stage of open collapse doline development, and the relationship of tiankengs to large underground rivers. The latter criterion separates tiankengs from other types of giant collapse features, such as caprock collapses over evaporates or large collapses over hydrothermal cavities. The South China karst offers evidence that un-roofing of caves is a large-scale geomorphic process playing an important role in the formation of cone and tower karst. It is probably the major process in the origin of large depressions, gorges and valleys in tropical karst, although other geomorphic processes contribute to shaping and maturation of a landscape and eventually obscure the origin in unroofed caves. Many saddles between hills and towers in fengcong and fenglin karst may owe their origin to cave un-roofing.

Size scales for closed depression landforms: the place of tiankengs, 2006, White Wb, White El
Development of large collapse structures in karstic terrain requires an interaction between mechanical instability and chemical removal of collapsed rock. Upward migration of pre-existing voids can choke out if there is no mechanism for the efficient removal of fallen blocks. Rates of dissolution, size of initial cavity, and overlying bedrock characteristics determine the size of the final surface landform. Collapse features range in scale from small sinkholes to hundreds of meters in such features as the Golondrinas collapse pit in Mexico. Tiankengs are interpreted as end members features on a continuous scale.

Cave un-roofing as a large-scale geomorphic process, 2006, Klimchouk, Alexander

A morphogenetic approach appears to be the most sensible in defining the tiankeng as a typological category. Tiankengs are giant collapse dolines formed over large river caves, with continuous precipitous perimeter and a diameter-to-depth ratio between 0.5 and 2. The term bears an evolutionary meaning, referring to the youthful stage of open collapse doline development, and the relationship of tiankengs to large underground rivers. The latter criterion separates tiankengs from other types of giant collapse features, such as caprock collapses over evaporates or large collapses over hydrothermal cavities. The South China karst offers evidence that un-roofing of caves is a large-scale geomorphic process playing an important role in the formation of cone and tower karst. It is probably the major process in the origin of large depressions, gorges and valleys in tropical karst, although other geomorphic processes contribute to shaping and maturation of a landscape and eventually obscure the origin in unroofed caves. Many saddles between hills and towers in fengcong and fenglin karst may owe their origin to cave un-roofing.


Size scales for closed depression landforms: the place of tiankengs, 2006, White William B. , White Elizabeth L.

Development of large collapse structures in karstic terrain requires an interaction between mechanical instability and chemical removal of collapsed rock. Upward migration of pre-existing voids can choke out if there is no mechanism for the efficient removal of fallen blocks. Rates of dissolution, size of initial cavity, and overlying bedrock characteristics determine the size of the final surface landform. Collapse features range in scale from small sinkholes to hundreds of meters in such features as the Golondrinas collapse pit in Mexico. Tiankengs are interpreted as end members features on a continuous scale.


Cave un-roofing as a large-scale geomorphic process, 2006, Klimchouk Alexander
A morphogenetic approach appears to be the most sensible in defining the tiankeng as a typological category. Tiankengs are giant collapse dolines formed over large river caves, with continuous precipitous perimeter and a diameter-to-depth ratio between 0.5 and 2. The term bears an evolutionary meaning, referring to the youthful stage of open collapse doline development, and the relationship of tiankengs to large underground rivers. The latter criterion separates tiankengs from other types of giant collapse features, such as caprock collapses over evaporates or large collapses over hydrothermal cavities. The South China karst offers evidence that un-roofing of caves is a large-scale geomorphic process playing an important role in the formation of cone and tower karst. It is probably the major process in the origin of large depressions, gorges and valleys in tropical karst, although other geomorphic processes contribute to shaping and maturation of a landscape and eventually obscure the origin in unroofed caves. Many saddles between hills and towers in fengcong and fenglin karst may owe their origin to cave un-roofing.

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